News and Analysis

Wild Media Frenzy Claims Border Agents ‘Whipping’ Haitians; Border Patrol: Absolutely Not

"There is no way a horse patrol unit would be whipping aliens."
mmigrants, mostly from Haiti gather on the bank of the Rio Grande on September 19, 2021 in Ciudad Acuna, Mexico, across the border from Del Rio, Texas. A
John Moore/Getty Images

Misleading tweets about U.S. Border Patrol agents and the chaos at the southern border went viral Monday. Though the media ran wild with images of agents allegedly “whipping” Haitians trying to cross the border illegally, Border Patrol agents have strongly refuted the posts.

“Border patrol is mounted on horseback rounding up Haitian refugees with whips,” posted Sawyer Hackett, senior advisor to Democrat Julián Castro and People First Future PAC. “This is unfathomable cruelty towards people fleeing disaster and political ruin. The administration must stop this.”

The post was retweeted and quote-tweeted nearly 34,000 times and liked 63,000 times.

According to Red State, the post made it all the way to White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki:

There wasn’t one picture of anyone being hit with whips or with reins. Yet when White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki was asked about the story, the reporter referred to the pictures/video we have “seen” and so did Psaki. Yet the video didn’t show any such thing. It means the media and Psaki just imagined they saw it and/or didn’t even bother with the truth — they just are easily manipulated by the narrative.

Fox News digital editor Peter Hasson, however, spoke to a Border Patrol agent about the allegation, and an agent strongly denied Hackett’s post.

“We do not carry whips and the only thing I see in their hands is reins,” the agent told Hasson.

“BP does an excellent job when it comes to use of force training,” the agent added. “There is no way a horse patrol unit would be whipping aliens. Whips are not issued or authorized for use.”

“Agents use their reins for a lot of reasons,” another Border Patrol source told Townhall reporter Julio Rosas. “Primarily it’s used to steer the horse, but agents will also spin them sometimes to deter people from getting too close to the horse…We are not aware of anyone being struck with the reins.”

The U.S. border with Mexico has been flooded with migrants, with more than 12,000 foreigners attempting to enter America being forced to take shelter under a bridge.

Part of our live shot w/ [Fox News host Dana Perino] from under the international bridge in Del Rio, TX this morning, where upwards of 12,000 migrants remain after crossing into the US illegally,” reported Fox News journalist Bill Melugin on Monday. “Mostly Haitians and Africans. Port of Entry above us remains closed to legal migration.”

“The Biden administration was forced to temporarily shut down the Del Rio Port of Entry along the Texas-Mexico border due to the more than 12,000 illegal aliens that had flooded the area, with hundreds more arriving on a seemingly regular basis,” The Daily Wire reported Monday.

“U.S. Customs and Border Protection today announced that the Office of Field Operations (OFO) Del Rio Port of Entry will temporarily close and re-route traffic from Del Rio to Eagle Pass to more effectively manage resources and ensure uninterrupted flow of trade and travel,” a statement from the agency said. “This temporary closure and shift is necessary in order for CBP to respond to urgent safety and security needs presented by an influx of migrants into Del Rio and is effective immediately.”

Images of the influx went viral online Saturday. “I am absolutely stunned by what I’m witnessing right now,” Melugin captioned video of the border. “We are on a boat in the Rio Grande near the Del Rio international bridge and we are watching as masses of hundreds of migrants walk across the river from Mexico and stream into the US illegally.”

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